OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP)The Baltimore Ravens were down to their No. 3 option at quarterback – but for the first time in almost two years, they also had both J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards available.
Dobbins ran for 120 yards and Edwards rushed for 66 as the Ravens edged the Pittsburgh Steelers 16-14 on Sunday to remain tied with Cincinnati atop the AFC North. Baltimore held on despite losing quarterback Tyler Huntley in the second half. Huntley was starting because Lamar Jackson injured his knee the previous weekend.
On Monday, coach John Harbaugh said Huntley was in concussion protocol.
”I really don’t have any updates that I would be allowed to share on that,” Harbaugh said. ”So, there’s really no pronouncements on that, or Lamar, in terms of who’s going to be ready and not ready at this point in time.”
The Ravens led 13-7 when Anthony Brown replaced Huntley in the third quarter. Baltimore was able to lean on the running game. Dobbins and Edwards combined for 42 of the team’s 57 yards on a fourth-quarter drive that ended in a field goal.
After a touchdown by Pittsburgh made the score 16-14, three runs by Edwards were enough to move the chains and seal the victory.
Dobbins and Edwards both missed all of last season with knee injuries, and neither has been that healthy in 2022, either. Dobbins played from Weeks 3-6 before going on injured reserve and returning Sunday. Edwards missed the first six weeks and has played in five of the team’s seven games since.
”Those guys are guys that we kind of built the team around, right?” Harbaugh said. ”So, to see those guys coming back and possibly becoming what we envisioned originally – after the really tough, gruesome injuries – is really encouraging. And I don’t think either one of them would tell you that they’re fully there yet. So, let’s just keep heading in this direction.”
Baltimore’s kicking game is obviously excellent with Justin Tucker, but the Ravens also have a significant weapon when the other team lines up for a field goal. Calais Campbell, their 6-foot-8 defensive lineman, blocked a fourth-quarter attempt by Pittsburgh.
It was the ninth blocked field goal of Campbell’s career, easily the most of any active player.
”He has a knack for penetrating the line,” Harbaugh said. ”He can slip around one of those blocks and get his feet in the ground and get up and use all 6-foot-8-plus when he does it.”
It’s the second time this season a blocked kick has helped Baltimore win a close game. Malik Harrison blocked a 60-yard attempt by Cleveland toward the end of the Ravens’ 23-20 win in October.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
Obviously, the passing game will be a big concern because of the injuries at quarterback. Huntley is at least an experienced backup whose skill set mirrors Jackson’s to a degree, but Brown is a rookie out of Oregon who made his NFL debut against the Steelers.
Not only that, when he came in the game, the Ravens were backed up at their own 1-yard line. Brown completed a 3-yard pass to Demarcus Robinson on his first play.
”They were packed in there. We could have run it. We could have snuck it. But it wasn’t going to go very far,” Harbaugh said. ”Then, we would have been second-and-9 or (second-and)-10.”
Baltimore picked up one first down on that drive before punting.
The offensive line deserves a lot of credit for Baltimore’s 215 yards rushing, especially given how limited the passing threat was at the end.
”The offensive line was blocking so good, and I can only go as far as they go,” Dobbins said. ”They did a good job for me.”
Normally dependable cornerback Marlon Humphrey allowed a season-high 115 yards in pass coverage, according to Pro Football Focus.
Dobbins and Edwards aren’t the only Ravens healthier these days. Safety Marcus Williams returned from a seven-game absence and intercepted his fourth pass of the season.
12 – The number of consecutive games the Ravens have outrushed their opponent. That’s the most in franchise history.
The Ravens play the first of two straight Saturday games when they visit Cleveland this weekend.
Follow Noah Trister at https://twitter.com/noahtrister
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